Cox Low-Income Internet: Making more families eligible for high-speed internet
One high-speed internet plan for participants of SNAP, TANF and School Lunch programs. And another plan for residents of HUD-assisted housing with school age children.
Cox Communications is now offering two different plans that bring high-speed Internet to financially-struggling Americans. One is aimed at families that participate in SNAP, TANF and the National School Lunch Program. The other is aimed at residents of HUD-assisted housing with school-age children. And they both deliver high-speed Internet for just $9.95 per month.
Cox is one of the many cable television companies that participate in a program called Connect2Compete, a non-profit dedicated to bridging the Digital Divide between America’s rich and poor.
Cox program #1 – for families participating in SNAP, TANF and the National School Lunch Program
If you live in areas of the country served by Cox and you qualify under their rules, you can now get their Low-Income Internet for just $9.95 per month instead of the much higher subscription rates the company typically charges for its lowest cost introductory plan.
Not only does their Low-Income Internet cost just $9.95 a month, but it delivers a truly fast internet experience at 5 Mbps download speed. That’s enough to enjoy streaming movies.
Plus there’s no deposit required, contracts to sign, installation or modem rental fees and the price is guaranteed for 2 years.
But the benefits of Cox Low-Income Internet don’t stop there. Cox says that qualifying families will also be able to purchase a computer for under $150. (The price is actually $149.99, but they are technically correct that the price is “under $150″.) They charge no activation fees and require no additional equipment fees. And the icing on the cake? They also include the Norton Security Suite, which gives you professional online security, absolutely free. That’s great, because it usually costs $160 or more.
Do you qualify for Cox low-income internet?
You can qualify for the Low-Income Internet program if at least one student in your home qualifies for the National School Lunch program. You will prove your eligibility by telling them that you have a student in the home and by submitting evidence of participation in the school lunch program, or evidence of being on either Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Why do participation in SNAP or TANF work? Because being on either program qualifies a student for the National School Lunch program, and we suppose the internet provider understands that not everyone can find their National School Lunch enrollment paperwork.
A recent announcement by the company gave us the impression that simply being on SNAP or TANF, even without a child in school, would make someone eligible for their low-income internet program. But given Connect2Compete (everyoneon.org), where you sign up for the Cox program, will only enroll anyone in this program who has a child in school lunch, that’s apparently the rule.
A few restrictions do apply
Cox program #2 – for families living in HUD-assisted housing with school-age children
Cox Communications, one of the nation’s largest cable TV companies, working with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD), is now offering low-cost internet to any HUD-assisted household with school-age children within Cox’s 18-state service area — including Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Virginia.
How low is the cost? You’ll get high-speed Internet access for the just $9.95 per month. It includes downloads speeds up to 10 Mbps, free in-home WiFi, free installation and free access to hundreds of thousands of WiFi hotspots across the country.
Just as in Cox’ other low-income program, families that qualify for the HUD-assisted program will also be able to purchase a computer for under $150. And they’ll pay no activation fees nor any additional equipment fees.
A few restrictions do apply
Although Cox has expanded the number of ways you can qualify for its low-income internet program, there are a couple restrictions of which you should be aware.
Restriction #1: You’re out of luck if you’ve been a Cox customer within the last three months. For example, if you’re a current Cox customer, the only way you can sign up for its low income internet plan is to cancel your service now and wait to sign up in 90 days. Frustrating, of course, but it may just be worth the wait.
Restriction #2: You’re out of luck if you have a Cox bill that’s more than 12 months overdue. That means you can’t sign up for the program unless you pay off that overdue bill or agree to a payment plan.
Restriction #3: Check your closet. You’re out of luck if you find any unreturned Cox cable equipment buried behind your mops and brooms. You’ll need to return that equipment before you can qualify for the low-cost internet plan.
Restriction #4: Obviously, you must live in an area served by Cox cable. According to our research, the company’s low-cost, high-speed internet service is available in 18 states and the District of Columbia. Those states are: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island and Virginia.
Cable television franchises are bought, sold and traded like baseball cards, so if you don’t see your state on this list, you should still check with Cox just in case they’ve added service in another market since this article was posted.
How to order Cox low-income internet
You can’t just go to the Cox website to order the low-income plan. You have to begin at a special page at Connect2Compete’s website, or call their Connect2Compete hotline:
Web page: connect2compete.org/cox/
Don’t try to use any other pages at Connect2compete.org, because they redirect you to Connect2compete’s site, EveryoneOn.org. The Cox page is the only one left on the site that works. Supposedly, you are supposed to be able to use EveryoneOn.org’s site to connect with Cox’s low-income program, but it appears they have not actually set it up to work with Cox for some inexplicable reason.
Don’t call the regular Cox sales numbers, as the representatives may not be authorized to offer you this program.
Note: the enrollment web page does not reflect SNAP and TANFF eligibility, but that is because the expanded Cox eligibility rules were just announced.